News / USA

    Petraeus Testifies on Benghazi Attack

    Cindy Saine
    Former CIA Director David Petraeus testified behind closed doors Friday before the House and Senate Intelligence Committees on the deadly September attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya.  Crowds of reporters and cameras were stationed on both sides of the U.S. Capitol, but Petraeus was completely shielded from view, just one week after he resigned as CIA director because of an extra-marital affair.

    The September 11th assault on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi left U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans dead.  The government's precautions against such an attack, and its response when the American compound was overrun and burned, is now at the center of an increasingly bitter fight on Capitol Hill between President Barack Obama and his Democratic allies, on the one hand, and congressional Republicans.

    Republican Congressman Peter King says the Obama administration's account of the terrorist attack in Benghazi was changed to delete any reference to al-Qaida involvement.

    "As far as General Petraeus' testimony today was, that from the start, he had told us that this was a terrorist attack or that there were terrorists involved from the start.  I told him in my questioning that I have a very different recollection of that. The clear impression that we were given was that the overwhelming evidence was that it arose out of spontaneous demonstrations," said King.

    • Yemeni protestors break a door of the U.S. Embassy during a protest about a film ridiculing Islam's Prophet Mohammed, Sana'a, Yemen, September 13, 2012.
    • Yemenis protest in front of the U.S. Embassy during a protest about a film ridiculing Islam's Prophet Mohammed, Sana'a, September 13, 2012.
    • Egyptian protesters burn tires as they clash with riot police outside the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, September 13, 2012.
    • An Egyptian protester throws back a tear gas canister toward riot police outside the U.S. embassy in Cairo, September 13, 2012.
    • A policeman stands in front of a police car set on fire by protesters in front of the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, during clashes between protesters and police, September 13, 2012.
    • White House staff are pictured after they lowered the U.S. flag to half staff on the roof of the White House in Washington, September 12, 2012, following the death of U.S. Ambassador to Libya, Chris Stevens.
    • President Barack Obama delivers a statement with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton from the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, September 12, 2012
    • A burnt car is parked at the U.S. consulate, which was attacked and set on fire by gunmen, in Benghazi, Libya, September 12, 2012.
    • An exterior view of the U.S. consulate, which was attacked and set on fire by gunmen yesterday, in Benghazi September 12, 2012.
    • An interior view of the damage at the U.S. consulate, which was attacked and set on fire by gunmen yesterday, in Benghazi, Libya, September 12, 2012.
    • Christopher Stevens, the U.S. ambassador to Libya, was killed along with three of his staff on September 11, 2012 during a demonstration at the U.S. consulate in Benghazi.  This photo was taken at his home in Tripoli, June 28, 2012.
    • A vehicle sits smoldering in flames after being set on fire inside the US consulate compound in Benghazi late on September 11, 2012.
    • An armed man waves his rifle as buildings and cars are engulfed in flames after being set on fire inside the U.S. consulate compound in Benghazi, Libya, late on September 11, 2012.
    • U.S. Consulate in Benghazi in flames during protest, September 11, 2012

    Shortly after the September attack the Central Intelligence Agency circulated "talking points" about the attack to senior U.S. officials. The U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Susan Rice, relied on those background notes to discuss the Benghazi attack on television a few days later (September 16). She said the attack most likely grew out of spontaneous Libyan protests against a notorious anti-Muslim video.

    Rice has been mentioned unofficially as a possible successor to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who intends to leave her post in the coming months. The dispute over what happened in Benghazi has been cited repeatedly by Rice's critics - by Republican Senators Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and John McCain of Arizona, in particular - who say they do not trust her.
     
    Here is Senator McCain:

    "Let's see what... Let's see what happens here. But we will do whatever is necessary to block the nomination that's within our power as far as Susan Rice is concerned," said McCain.

    At a news conference this week, the president reacted angrily:

    "If Senator McCain and others want to go after somebody, they should go after me. But for them to go after the U.N. ambassador who had nothing to do with Benghazi and ... to besmirch her reputation, is outrageous," said President Obama.

    On Capitol Hill Friday, Democratic women lawmakers gathered to defend Rice against what they described as McCain and Graham's unfair and sexist attacks. Congresswoman Gwen Moore said she realizes some members of the opposition party are disappointed that they lost the presidential election.

    "But to batter this woman because they do not feel that they have had the ability to batter President Obama, is something that we, the women, are not going to stand by and watch.  Their feckless and reckless speculation is unworthy of their offices as senators," said Moore.

    Lawmakers say there will be more hearings on the Benghazi attack, which means there will likely be more partisan fights over what senior administration officials knew about the attacks and when they knew it.

    Timeline of the Petraeus Scandal
    Loading...

    You May Like

    Post-White House, Obamas to Rent Washington Mansion

    Nine-bedroom home is 3 kilometers from Oval Office, near capital's Embassy Row; rent estimated at around $22,000 a month

    Red Planet? Not so much!

    New research suggest that Mars is in a warm period between cyclical ice ages, and that during Ice Age Maximum over 500,000 years ago, the red planet was decidedly ice, and much whiter to the naked eye.

    Taj Mahal Battles New Threat from Insects

    Swarms of insects are proliferating in the heavily contaminated waters of the Yamuna River, which flows behind the 17th century monument

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Chinese Americans for Trump Going Against National Trendi
    X
    May 27, 2016 5:57 AM
    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Chinese Americans for Trump Going Against National Trend

    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnam

    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video First-generation, Afghan-American Student Sets Sights on Basketball Glory

    Their parents are immigrants to the United States. They are kids who live between two worlds -- their parents' homeland and the U.S. For many of them, they feel most "American" at school. It can be tricky balancing both worlds. In this report, produced by Beth Mendelson, Arash Arabasadi tells us about one Afghan-American student who seems to be coping -- one shot at a time.
    Video

    Video Newest US Citizens, Writing the Next Great Chapter

    While universities across the United States honor their newest graduates this Friday, many immigrants in downtown Manhattan are celebrating, too. One hundred of them, representing 31 countries across four continents, graduated as U.S. citizens, joining the ranks of 680,000 others every year in New York and cities around the country.
    Video

    Video Vietnam Sees Strong Economic Growth Despite Incomplete Reforms

    Vietnam has transformed its communist economy to become one of the world's fastest-growing nations. While the reforms are incomplete, multinational corporations see a profitable future in Vietnam and have made major investments -- as VOA's Jim Randle reports.
    Video

    Video Qatar Denies World Cup Corruption

    The head of Qatar’s organizing committee for the 2022 World Cup insists his country's bid to host the soccer tournament was completely clean, despite the corruption scandals that have rocked the sport’s governing body, FIFA. Hassan Al-Thawadi also said new laws would offer protection to migrants working on World Cup construction projects. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Infrastructure Funding Puts Cambodia on Front Line of International Politics

    When leaders of the world’s seven most developed economies meet in Japan next week, demands for infrastructure investment world wide will be high on the agenda. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push for “quality infrastructure investment” throughout Asia has been widely viewed as a counter to the rise of Chinese investment flooding into region.
    Video

    Video Democrats Fear Party Unity a Casualty in Clinton-Sanders Battle

    Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton claimed a narrow victory in Tuesday's Kentucky primary even as rival Bernie Sanders won in Oregon. Tensions between the two campaigns are rising, prompting fears that the party will have a difficult time unifying to face the presumptive Republican nominee, Donald Trump. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video Portrait of a Transgender Marriage: Husband and Wife Navigate New Roles

    As controversy continues in North Carolina over the use of public bathrooms by transgender individuals, personal struggles with gender identity that were once secret are now coming to light. VOA’s Tina Trinh explored the ramifications for one couple as part of trans.formation, a series of stories on transgender issues.
    Video

    Video Amerikan Hero Flips Stereotype of Middle Eastern Character

    An Iranian American comedian is hoping to connect with American audiences through a film that inverts some of Hollywood's stereotypes about Middle Eastern characters. Sama Dizayee reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora